The English Foxhound

descriptive textDog breed info
English Foxhound
Weight: 55 — 75 lbs
Height: 23” — 27”
AKC Rank 2008 #155
Lifespan: 10—13 yrs
Group Hound
Origin: England

Breed Overview

Origin: 1700’s. Original function: Trailing fox. Today: Trailing fox.

The exact origin of this breed is not clear. Detailed records have been kept of the English Foxhound since the late 1700’s. The Greyhound and Fox Terrier were likely involved in the development of the Foxhound. Stud records were kept dating back to the early 1700’s. It was around 1750 that some men got the idea that fox hunting with fast horses and hound dogs would be an entertaining sport. As long as the dogs could track a faint scent while on the run, and to keep this up for hours, this might work. The Foxhound was used in “packs” of up to 50 dogs at a time to track the fox while hunters rode horses directly behind them. “Riding to the hounds” became a rich man’s game with plenty of ceremony. The Foxhound was brought to America and in 1909 was used to breed the American Foxhound. The AKC later registered the breed. Neither the American nor the English versions caught on very well and both remain rare breeds today.


The English Foxhound is intelligent but remains a challenge to train. They can learn obedience and even agility if you have the time and patience. Especially patience. The clicker training method with positive reinforcement is most effective, or you can work with Cesar Millan, The Dog Whisperer and do it Cesar’s Way. Either way, remember, patience and repetition will work.

Crate Training

Want to crate train your Foxhound puppy? It's easy and if you're interested, take a look and you'll see what to do. Crate training your puppy will save many headaches and problems.

Potty Training

The English Foxhound puppy can be difficult to house train, potty train, toilet train, housebreak or whatever you want to call it. They learn, but slowly. If you have a puppy, decide if you want to crate or paper potty train it. For the best results, we have a page at Crate vs Paper Potty Training which will help you decide and from there you can get all the information you need to get the job done. Always praise the pup profusely when she goes potty in the RIGHT PLACE so she knows she has done a good thing.

If you have an older dog, take the dog outside every two hours until she gets the idea which door leads to her potty area. Older dogs catch on to the potty or housebreaking pretty fast once they are shown what to do.


English Foxhounds are first and foremost scenthounds and hunters. They are serious ab out this work and will run for hours steady after a scent. They have a lot of energy and stamina. The English version of the foxhound is a little heavier and not as fast as the American version but they are pretty much alike otherwise. The dogs used for hunting don't make the best house pets.

If you are looking for a house pet, look for a dhow dog as they are more settled and not as likely to run off after a fox. This dog does well with children, friends and relatives and other animals. This is a tolerant, gentle breed. They are friendly dogs and crave a lot of companionship from either dogs or humans. Because of their high energy, they are not well suited to apartments, condos and flats. Even the “show dogs” need a lot of exercise, but once that is achieved, they are okay for the house and as pets. The Foxhound can not be left alone for long periods and must always have plenty to do and other people or dogs around for company. They can become destructive if bored or under exercised. . The Foxhounds are not well suited to city life. They belong in a country setting. This dog bays rather than barks.

If you happen to get an English Foxhound with a separation anxiety problem, that can be dealt with by investing a few hours of work on your part and some "tough love."


Friendly Toward Other Dogs

Likes the company of dogs. When hunting they work in large groups of dogs. Actually, the Foxhound needs to be either with dogs or humans for companionship.

Friendly Toward Other Pets

.Good with household pets. Introduce the house cat slowly and with common sense. As a “pack animal” the English Foxhound enjoys company.

Friendly Toward Strangers

Likes people and does well with people.


Moderately playful. Enjoys games of fetch, catching Frisbees, and jogging.


Moderately affection with his own family and children.

Good with children?

Very good with kids. This is a friendly dog that loves to play and romp with children. Very small kids need close supervision, as with any dog.

Good with Seniors over 65?

No. Need too much exercise. There are better choices for the senior.

Living environment

House with a medium to large fenced yard, farm or ranch with open fields. This breed needs to be indoors with humans for companionship or outdoors with a pack of dogs for the same purpose.

Energy level

High energy. Give him 9 bars out of 10. He can run for hours steady.

Exercise needs, daily

High. Needs two long walks daily plus stimulating games of fetch or Frisbee. Great jogging partner, hiking companion or tag along with a bicycle as long as the dog is on leash. English Foxhounds must ALWAYS be on leash unless in a protected area.


Very good watchdog. He “bays” instead of barks, though.

Guard dog

No. Too friendly.


Moderate shedding.


Brush occasionally with a stiff bristle brush. Bathe infrequently as this dries the skin.

English Foxhound READING
Excellent for anyone considering the English Foxhound, or for an owner of one. Makes a nice gift.
English Foxhound (Kennel Club Dog Breed Series)

Best Way to Train Your Gun Dog: The Delmar Smith Method

Dog Health Issues For The English Foxhound
Below: The dog illness / illnesses or medical problems listed for the Field Spaniel by various vets.

This is basically a healthy breed. These are the dog illness and medical problems this breed is prone to that have been listed by various veterinarians at different times over the past decade or so and some pertain to puppies and very young dogs that a breeder would deal with.

The information contained herein has been gathered from numerous books by veterinarians and is intended as general information only. Every dog and situation is different. You must see your vet. Our information is for general interest only and not intended to replace the advice provided by your own veterinarian.

  • There are very few reported illnesses for this breed.

  • Hip dysplasia CHD- Hind end limping, hind/back leg acts lame, can't move, weak legs. Wear and time causes the femur to fit poorly into the pelvic socket with improper rotation causing the English Foxhound great pain, weakness and difficulty walking. You may notice the dog “hopping”” like a rabbit when running plus hesitating to climb stairs, all due to pain in the hind quarters. The problem actually starts as a very young puppy with an abnormal formation of the hip joint and grows progressively. A vet can locate this with a diagnostics test.

  • Deafness—Hereditary or caused by: Excessive loud noise, Intolerance to anesthesia, drug toxicity, and Otitis (middle ear infection), In some cases, one ear can have no hearing from birth and the other ear can be losing the ability to hear over time, undetected, then suddenly one morning the hearing is totally gone. There is no reversing once that happens.

  • Renal cortical hypoplasia—Kidney failure coming from a number of causes ranging from hereditary to ingesting automotive antifreeze and also bacterial infections. Once the kidneys become affected, there is no cure. What happens is there remains a shortage of functioning tissue in the kidneys to cleanse the body. Waste builds in the blood and the toxins cause vomiting, depression, lack of appetite and death. Same happens if the dog eats a little rat poison, as one of mine did.

Other health problems could occur with your English Foxhound. If you notice any problems with your dog, take it to the vet immediately. This website is for general information only and is not intended to, in any way, be a medical guide.


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